Old Window Workshop was recently featured in the DevelopSpringfield February newsletter. You can read the article here: READ MORE
Nannette Bowie, Production Manager for Old Window Workshop, was recently a featured speaker on a panel discussion at the Annual Meeting of Wellspring Cooperative. The organization is creating an engine for new, community-based, worker-owned companies in inner-city Springfield, Massachusetts based on the purchasing power of area anchor institutions — the colleges, universities, and hospitals — that purchase more than $1.5 billion worth of goods and services a year.
Old Window Workshop has been selected to replace 68 windows in the historic "Old Lenox High School", located in Lenox, MA. The work begins in February, 2017 in collaboration with NEI Construction. Historic tax credits have been secured.
We are also in the proposal stages for other projects in Western Mass including the Goshen Congregational Church, replacing 16 windows on the south and east side and 1691 Main St., Springfield, where 120 windows would be replaced in this grand building.
After the election, I had the good fortune to meet and work with activists for environmental and social justice. First, I attended a panel discussion of historic preservationists led by UMass professors, Max Page and Marla Miller. These folks are redefining the future of preservation as a tool to fight climate change and inequality. The second was the Board of Directors of the Building Materials Reuse Association who met in Chicago. This Board is a group of tool belt entrepreneurs, architects and organizers who reuse original materials from buildings and give it back to residents who reclaim their own whole communities.
I heard Max Page say, “We can’t build our way out of climate disaster, we have to preserve our way out of it.” And Anne Nicklin, CEO of the BMRA often calls us to envision and act to create a “world without waste.” That means no more throwaways of our great natural resources, including us people.
Ahead of us is the fair distribution of good wages and family-centered, community-focused work where women are equal in all fields. Ahead of us is saving our own local environments by stopping leaks in existing gas lines—not building new ones. Ahead of us is re-learning what democracy should look like---not giving our power over to bloated billionaires.
Thank you, Develop Springfield!!! At the Wellspring Cooperative’s annual meeting Jay Minkarah, CEO of Develop Springfield, talked about his non-profit dedicated to economic development of the city. Jay said he intends to continue to have historic windows repaired by the Old Window Workshop because saving windows is good for the environment, replacement windows detract from the architecture of buildings, original windows can provide jobs for women in poor neighborhoods of the city, money has to be spent on the windows anyway, so why not keep the money in our own city? Jay said, “What can be better than that?”
For 2015, we thank Quigley Builders of Ashfield and the Cummington Historical Society for allowing us to repair 16 windows at the old Parsonage on Main St. We thank MRM, Inc. of Cabot St. in Holyoke for our ongoing contract to repair their large factory windows, and we thank Develop Springfield for the opportunity to restore windows at the new Innovation Center on Bridge St. Nan, Tokyo, Annielu, Meraly, Tawanna, Tyeka, and Dawn brought money home to their families learning how to scrape, sand, repair, glaze and paint windows.
Going into 2016, these foundation buildings resulted in the core of women who will become worker-owners of the Old Window Workshop including Nannette Bowie, and Tokyo Baldwin.
Pam Howland, Founder, Old Window Workshop.